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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
News >  Crime/Public Safety

Man sentenced to five years after drive-by shooting in Perry District

March 16, 2023 Updated Thu., March 16, 2023 at 9:05 p.m.

The Spokane County Courthouse is seen in this August 2020 photo.   (Dan Pelle/The Spokesman-Review)
The Spokane County Courthouse is seen in this August 2020 photo.  (Dan Pelle/The Spokesman-Review) Buy this photo

A Spokane Superior Court Judge sentenced a man to more than five years in prison Thursday morning after he pleaded guilty to targeting a woman in a drive-by shooting in the Perry District late last year.

Jimmy J. Blackburn, 39, greeted his mother with a “Hi, mom,” as he was seated before Judge Rachelle E. Anderson. He pleaded guilty to second-degree assault and second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm.

According to court documents, Blackburn and a woman, Brandelyn E. Labrum, 33, pulled up to a woman who was waiting for a ride near the intersection of East Seventh Avenue and South Perry Street in December. Several bullets were fired from the vehicle, one of which may have caused a grazing wound on the victim’s leg, court documents said. Police found multiple bullet holes in a nearby residence.

The relationship between the three people was unknown at the time, but Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Jonathan Deegan said the three were acquaintances.

Spokane police pulled over the Chevrolet Malibu that Labrum and Blackburn were driving in the downtown area that night and arrested both of them.

Blackburn was originally charged with first-degree assault, drive-by shooting, second-degree unlawful possession of a firearm and possession of a stolen firearm. The charges were lowered because prosecutors were unable to prove the victim suffered “great bodily harm,” under Washington state law, Degan said.

Blackburn’s guilty plea marks his second strike offense, Degan told the court.

“Anytime he comes back here for an offense of this nature, he will be facing life in prison,” he said.

Blackburn did not make a statement to the court.

Blackburn’s brother, Joshua Vandouris, was killed in a shooting on March 7 that ended with a vehicle collision on Cleveland Avenue, according to defense attorney, James D. Kirkham. Blackburn hopes to help raise his brother’s children when he is released, Kirkham said.

Anderson said she appreciated Blackburn’s willingness to accept responsibility for the shooting.

Labrum is expected to appear in court in April for a pretrial. She is charged with drive-by shooting.

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